EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — The Diocese of El Paso announced they would begin Phase 3 Protocol for Church Gatherings starting September 12-13. This means parishes in El Paso County will begin indoor Masses up to 25 percent capacity.
The phase three protocol states, “Churches where disinfection and social distancing norms are strictly followed may also resume gatherings for Sunday Mass at 25 percent capacity. Gatherings at 25 percent capacity for Mass on weekdays, baptisms, Eucharistic exposition for one to two hours, and prayer during the day are permitted as well during Phase 3. Funeral Masses, services in funeral homes, and weddings remain suspended within Phase 3.”
Though indoor gatherings at a quarter capacity will resume, the Diocese is urging parishioners who are sick and those who are in at-risk populations to stay home. Those identified in the at-risk category include people over 65, especially those with chronic lung disease; moderate to severe asthma; chronic heart disease; severe obesity; diabetes; high blood pressure, chronic kidney disease undergoing dialysis, liver disease; or weakened immune system.
Televised Masses will continue for those who are unable to resume in-person services.